Super Agent

Archive for November, 2016

The Complex Insurance Sale

Let’s face it, selling insurance and risk management solutions is challenging. As producers, you’re faced with a multitude of challenging buying scenarios ranging from inexperienced or commodity buyers, to boards of directors and the often reluctant to change C-suite. The problem is, it isn’t likely to get any easier. We know through the extensive research of the corporate executive board that there are more buyers at the table, in fact 5.4 of them. This alone increases the complexity of your job.

Today, more than ever, you must understand group-buying dynamics and the challenges which arise from within. And there will be challenges. Unfortunately, group-buying dynamics tend to favor the incumbent, not the outsider.

So how can you take control and navigate these choppy waters?

First, you need to identify a true champion within the group. This may or may not be the CEO. It will be the person who is advocating for change. This champion is the one who can help you and influence other members of the buying team on your behalf.

Secondly, you’ll want to make sure your champion is clear on your process for engagement. They must understand not only how you engage, but also, why you engage in the manner you do. They will need to be armed with insights about your capabilities and resources, and how they will help the team avoid risks and improve outcomes. This is not a features and benefits presentation. They need to be able to answer questions as they arise and help you build consensus with what problem the group is actually trying to solve.

Next, it will be important to understand challenges, barriers and concerns members of the team have. This is where an assessment can be particularly helpful. Your assessment will likely identify where silos exist in the organization. While you’ll want individual feedback, you won’t want to get caught in the trap of trying to solve individual problems. Doing so will only increase the complexity of the sale. Again, you’ll want to continue to gain consensus amongst the team as to what problem or problems you all agree must be solved.

Your champion will act as a coach to the team. Because you’ve taken the time to help them understand your process and they have an insider’s view of the group dynamics, they will help you navigate and overcome challenges.

As you progress through the sales process, you’ll want to educate each member of the team. You’ll want your training to remain focused on the large issues facing the entire team. If you identify disagreements as to strategy or issues being addressed you’ll want to take it on. Ignoring challenges could end up costing you the sale.

Following these steps isn’t going to be easy. In fact it’s going to seem like you are spending more time trying to manage a dysfunctional team then selling them something. And you’re right, you will be. But that’s what it’s going to take to win.

Create Three New Email and Voicemail Scripts

Creating first appointments can be challenging. To overcome the challenges of a crowded marketplace and overwhelmed and busy buyers, it’s critical that the messaging you send to prospective clients pique curiosity and disrupt their way of thinking about buying insurance and managing risk.

You may find yourself struggling with developing messages that do this. One of the ways you can gain traction is to take time to develop new messages and voicemails around topics that are likely of interest to your prospects. Finding the content is easier than you think. Here are some places you can go to get fresh content that will help you develop interesting and effective emails and voicemails:

• LinkedIn Groups: Visit the groups your prospects are in. What are the topics of conversation? Which threads are getting the most attention? Once you identify what your prospects are talking about, use that to create a voicemail message or email script. It may start out sounding like: “I recently heard a number of business owners in the manufacturing space discussing ____, and I’m curious if this is an issue that you’ve found yourself trying to address.”

You can also get ideas for messaging from the Monthly Technical Webinars from Oceanus Partners. While the content is developed to help you gain or refresh your technical skills, with few modifications, it can be used to pique the curiosity of your prospects. For example, a recent technical training discussed how agents can differentiate themselves by creating enhanced submissions. Why not create a message for your prospects that talks about how poor submissions can actually limit their options in the marketplace?

As you know, business owners are proud of building their business and would be upset to learn that a poor submission will not only work against them from a pricing standpoint but it also could misrepresent their business to insurance companies.

Creating effective emails and voicemails doesn’t have to take a lot of time. We encourage you to set aside time each quarter to freshen up your messages and create new ones. This will not only engage your prospects, but keep you from getting bored with the same old scripts.

These insights are intended to inspire you to get creative and, more importantly, help you get in the door with leverage!